Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Garbage In. Garbage Out.

The second law of thermodynamics guarantees that computer hackers will discover, sooner or later, the whereabouts of McHenry County. And according to the public sector pensioners at the McHenryCountyBlog, that day has arrived:
The host I use to publish McHenry County Blog is Word Press. Last night I started noticing underline words that, when clicked upon, transfer readers to something called "," whatever that is. I apologize for the annoyance.
Unauthorized Links Now Appearing on Word Press Publications
Discerning operatives will instantly recognize that is the URL of a notorious Russian zombie botnet porn site. Ha ha j/k. Discerning operatives will instantly recognize that is, erm, Wikipedia -- the Internet's (as well as your LakeCountyEye's) official reference source.

This blog, for one, will often post a hyperlink to the Wiki, like for instance ...
Public Sector Pension
These hyperlinks are intended to provide the reader access to a quick and authoritative brief on any topic. In fact the practice is so common among bloggers that blogsites offer standard tools to automate the process of tagging their HTML:
Plugin Directory
Tag: wikipedia
For operatives who are interested in installing a WordPress plugin for creating Wiki hyperlinks, your LakeCountyEye suggests ...
Creates links to Wikipedia with different languages
The plugin is a Wikipedia plugin, for setting links to Wikipedia articles. The language and the description for every link can be set individually.

Reference 2 Wiki
Unless of course you happen to be a tragi-comical blogger at the McHenryCountyBlog. In that case what you might be looking for is an appropriate plugin removal tool:
How to Uninstall a WordPress Plugin
Now, the last time a blogger in McHenry County actually attempted to uninstall a plugin, the area lost power for a week:
Power Outages in McHenry County
This may explain why the easily befuddled bloggers at the McHenryCountyBlog opted not to remove the annoying plugins off of their computers. They opted instead to keep the unwelcome hyperlinks, while asking their readers to install some annoying ad-blocking crapware on their computers:
Heck of a Guy blogger Allan Showalter came up with the solution to the pop-ads on my web site, as well as every other one with text. It's called "Adblock." You can access it here if you have words with dotted underlining on you screen. I'm so please to know that McHenry County Blog is not the exporter on unauthorized links.
Ad Blocker Add-on Cures Unwanted Links on Word Press, etc.
Content filters like Adblock Plus that block scripted HTTP requests to prevent popups and other unwanted ads usually have no effect on the sort of embedded hyperlinks that bedevil the bewildered bloggers at the McHenryCountyBlog.

A final note: smart operatives will make sure their antivirus software is up-to-date & current before any future visits to the McHenryCountyBlog!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Goodnight Irene

Now that Barack Obama stopped Hurricane Irene in her tracks ...
OBAMA stopped the Hurricane!!!!!!!!
what is the President of the United States to do for an encore?

Oh yeah, the re-election thing.

Since his super-powers seem to be no match against the Republican Party, GOP candidates are amassing in droves for a chance to challenge Obama in 2012. There are, in fact, so many presidential candidates to choose from that the Republican Party local intelligentsia are having a hard time making up their minds. According to the Daily Herald ...
As the Republican primary race for president begins to pick up steam, top GOP leaders in the suburbs largely are delaying picking who to get behind. It's a process that's usually well under way by now, with local officials already wearing buttons and stumping for their favorite national figures. But not this year.
Local GOP slow to back presidential choices
Among those with a wait-and-see attitude include State Reps Mike Fortner & Randy Ramey, State Sens Matt Murphy & Kirk Dillard, and Congressman Randy Hultgren.

One GOP luminary not eager to mealymouth-pussyfoot around is Lake County's own Congressman Joe Walsh:
Walsh contends Obama is vulnerable enough that "we don't need to find the next Ronald Reagan."
Local GOP slow to back presidential choices
Walsh is not called the tip-o-the-spear for nothing.

Well your LakeCountyEye has never shied away from a directive, particularly one from Congressman Walsh. Having surveyed a database of past presidential candidates, your LakeCountyEye has compiled not one but a list of ten mopes -- none of whom are the next Ronald Reagan -- but could still beat Barack Obama in 2012.

Ten Douches
Who Can Beat
Pres Obama in 2012
  1. Harold Stassen
  2. Alan Keyes
  3. Alfred E Neuman
  4. Lyndon LaRouche
  5. Ralph Nader
  6. Ross Perot
  7. Al Sharpton
  8. Newt Gingrich
  9. Bill the Cat
  10. Joe Walsh

Watch for your LakeCountyEye, looking presidential.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Q the Eye/08.27.11

Dear LakeCountyEye,

Where is the LakeCountyEye compound? I say it's somewhere up with the horse farms. A friend says it doesn't exist. A pair of box-seat Fielders tickets are riding on your answer.

Lookie Loo

Dear Snoop Dogg,

Heavily guarded compounds must be the hot topic of the week. There are some eerie similarities being revealed between the LakeCountyEye compound and Colonel Gadhafi's Tripoli compound. For instance did you know that the LakeCountyEye compound also has a secret tunnel network, extending from Waukegan to Chicago to Springfield and parts beyond? And the LakeCountyEye compound is also the site of one of Lake County's largest scrapbook shrines to Condoleezza Rice?

But to answer the question, your LakeCountyEye's witness protection program case officer strongly frowns upon the divulging of such information. Suffice it to say the compound does indeed exist. Hopefully that admission is good enough at least for an autographed photo of Kenneth Kevin Costner.

Your LakeCountyEye is authorized to share some interior photos of the compound:
The above is the summer breakfast nook. Discerning operatives will immediately recognize a mahogany fauteuil dining set w/matching endtable, folding portafinestra french doors, and a 20'x 30' anatolian carpet.

Discerning operatives may also recognize Lake County Clerk Willard Helander. Your LakeCountyEye graciously loaned the space to Helander, a few weeks back, to shoot her QVC guest-host segment.

The entire video can be reviewed on the YouTube:
Candidate Petition Filing Process
Late-Night-TV-aholics may want to also keep an eye peeled for more video of your LakeCountyEye's compound on an upcoming episode of Hoarders.

If you are an elected official, or a previously elected official, or just a private citizen under indictment, send your political questions to Q the Eye c/o ...

Friday, August 26, 2011

The Hound of the Baskervilla in Lake Villa

Lake County loves a whodunnit. As readers of this blog are strangely aware ...
Godzilla in Lake Villa
Last week, sheriff's deputies were summoned by the spouse of State Senator Suzi Schmidt to intervene in a domestic kerfuffle. In this case however, the mystery is not so much a whodunnit -- operatives everywhere know who did it -- but a what-happened-to-it.

The what-happened-to-it, in this case, is a Daily Herald report of the incident. The report, posted online on Aug 18, vanished as suddenly as it appeared, without a trace, never to be seen again.

Most media sources -- including the Tribune, News-Sun, Sun-Times, Northwest Herald -- posted versions, which are still available online. However all that remains of the Daily Herald story are a few tantalizing bits and pieces of evidence captured by the search engines:

This much is known:
Lake County Sheriff's Lt. Christopher Thompson said deputies were called to the Schmidt home near Lake Villa at 6 p.m. Tuesday by Schmidt's husband Robert, 63. Deputies took statements from both Robert Schmidt, and Suzie Schmidt, ...
Police called to Schmidt home for domestic disturbance
Everything else is subject to much heated debate.

That Lake County's newspaper of record -- the Daily Herald -- could so quickly misfile a story, and under mysterious circumstances, and without a word of explanation, is disturbing to say the least. Your LakeCountyEye has taken the liberty of rounding up the usual operatives suspects, and with the aid of 100% legal enhanced interrogation methods, has obtained some valuable leads. Ten, to be exact. Operatives are challenged to dust off their deerstalker caps and join in the hunt for the whereabouts of the missing Daily Herald story:

Ten Leads for Locating a Missing Daily Herald story:
Police called to Schmidt home for domestic disturbance
  1. Look under the campaign bus.
  2. Check all the public reststops on the Route 53 Extension.
  3. Inspect the skybox at the Fielders Stadium.
  4. Talk to the roulette croupier at the Park City Casino.
  5. Find the owners of Winchester House.
  6. Lost in the mail, along with Joe Walsh's child support check.
  7. Search along the Lake County Olympic Village Equestrian trail.
  8. Canvass Lake County Board Districts 22 & 23.
  9. Ask the Millburn Strangler.
  10. Follow the Money

Where to look for your LakeCountyEye this weekend? Not a clue!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Joe Walsh: Quite Lying

This must be Lake County connubial bliss week or something. LakeCountyEye operative, Katie Halper, sent this venereal viral video, no doubt with high hopes of taking the Internet by storm.

Actually, your LakeCountyEye found the video somewhere on the CapitolFaxBlog. And Katie Halper is some Internet comedienne in New York. Probably.

Joe Walsh: Quite Lying
Your LakeCountyEye cannot not recall an accent dominating a performance quite like this one, since Fargo.

Your LakeCountyEye notes that the generic Internet comics, wielding generic southsidechicago accents, may now be targeting Lake County's very own Eighth District Congressman, Joe Walsh. This means Walsh has jumped the shark or something.


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Godzilla in Lake Villa

There are some big footprints to follow in Lake County. As readers of this blog are stridently aware ...
A Gift Horse
the owner of those footprints once met the Millburn Stranger, long long ago, on the field of battle. And won. With the Strangler vanquished, the trail of those footprints then lead through heavily populated areas of the once-tranquil suburban Lindenhurst.

Now the trail leads unmistakably to once-tranquil suburban Lake Villa, and to a scene where Sheriff's deputies were summoned to intervene in a domestic altercation. As readers of this blog are lawfully aware ...
The Megilla in Lake Villa
County Sheriff Mark Curran issued a news release stating his deputies responded to a disturbance call, last Tuesday, from the home of State Senator Suzi Schmidt. Needless to say the papers this week were all over the story. Like Godzilla on downtown Tokyo.

Ha ha j/k. Actually the opposite has happened, no one is talking to anyone, the wagons are circling, it's as if a news blackout has been decreed upon the media. So if you've come to your LakeCountyEye for the latest on this still unfolding story, you've wasted your time.

Your LakeCountyEye can note that this is an anniversary of Tiger Woods's notorious domestic incident. Exactly 631 days ago, the police responded to an incident involving an automobile at Woods's Orlando home. (This is significant because 631 is your LakeCountyEye's Little Lotto number.) If your LakeCountyEye recalls correctly, police arrived that evening to discover that the Mrs had rammed the Tiger's car with her car, and had attempted to run him over. She was upset over the Tiger's drunken condition. Anyways, the Tiger was so frightened that he called the police.

This all happened back in the day -- so your LakeCountyEye's recollection may be a little fuzzy. Your LakeCountyEye does know the successful career Tiger built on the links never quite recovered afterwards.

Friday, August 19, 2011

The Megilla in Lake Villa

Ha ha, your LakeCountyEye must be psychic or something. No sooner does this blog publish its hard-hitting expose of domestic violence ...
The Thrilla in Lake Villa
than domestic violence is brought home, courtesy the local headlines:
Lake County Sheriff's deputies were called to the Lake Villa home of State Sen. Suzanne Schmidt by her husband, Robert, earlier this week, Sheriff Mark Curran said Thursday in a press release. Police were called to a domestic incident Tuesday evening involving the 60-year-old Republican state senator
Police: State Sen. Schmidt involved in domestic incident
More of the same can be seen at ...
Suzanne 'Suzi' Schmidt, State Senator, Involved In Domestic Incident With Husband, Police Say

Deputies called to domestic at Sen. Schmidt’s home

'Verbal argument' brings deputies to state senator's home

Police called to home of state senator for domestic incident
Its been said: dog bites man is not news, but when man bites dog, you got a story. Pretty much the same applies when the Sheriff is called to intervene in a domestic incident. When the incident involves a State Senator, and when it's the Senator's spouse who made the call, you got a story.

The fact that the incident involves a prominent Lake County political figure, Suzi Schmidt, may account for the reason that the Daily Herald has already yanked their version:
The article requested can not be found! Please refresh your browser or go back. (DA,20110818,news,708189903,AR).
Police called to Schmidt home for domestic disturbance

On the flip side, the Lake County Sheriff's office was to the fore and ready with a press release following the incident. Sheriff Make Curran is expected to announce his candidacy for State's Attorney and one doesn't get elected by missing opportunities to see one's name in the media.

For operatives wondering when the 2012 election cycle unofficially begins, you may be looking at it.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Thrilla in Lake Villa

August is traditionally the slow-news month -- and traditionally the slow-political-news month, times two. Lake County is no exception to the rule, your LakeCountyEye has been scouring the media all day for something to blog about, and with little to show for it. As readers of this blog are sluggishly aware:
A Gift Horse
Tuesday nights are reserved by your LakeCountyEye for listening to the County Sheriff's Police scanner. The scanner is the source of more than 90% of your LakeCountyEye's stories. However, last Tuesday your LakeCountyEye fell asleep early and has nothing newsworthy to report.

Your LakeCountyEye can report a strange dream, while asleep by the scanner, about your LakeCountyEye's all-time favorite TV show, the battling Bickersons. Your LakeCountyEye's comedic eye-teeth were cut -- back in the day -- memorizing John and Blanche Bickerson's hilarious routines.
Blanche: You used to be so considerate. Since you got married to me you haven't got any sympathy at all.
John: I have, too. I've got everybody's sympathy.
Blanche: Believe me, there's better fish in the ocean than the one I caught.
John: There's better bait, too.
Blanche: I don't see how you can go to bed without kissing me good night.
John: I can do it.
Blanche: You'd better say you're sorry for that, John.
John: Okay, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry.
Blanche: You are not.
John: I am too. I'm the sorriest man that was ever born.
Blanche: You stopped loving me the day we were married.
John: That wasn't the day at all.
Ha ha, timeless comedy always reads like it was ripped fresh from today's headlines! Anyhow, your LakeCountyEye was inspired to compile a list of ten other famous battling couples, taken from the annals of history. This will be a quiz and readers are challenged to guess who would win in a fair fight:

Who Would Win in a Fair Fight?
  1. Al Bundy vs Peggy Bundy
  2. Leroy Lockhorn vs Loretta Lockhorn
  3. Ralph Kramden vs Alice Kramden
  4. Felix vs Oscar
  5. Lucy Ricardo vs Ricky Ricardo
  6. Archie Bunker vs Edith Bunker
  7. Wile E Coyote vs Road Runner
  8. Hyacinth Bucket vs Richard Bucket
  9. Fred Flintstone vs Wilma Flintstone
  10. Abbott vs Costello

Readers may send their guesses to

Bonus points will be awarded to readers who can suggest other famous battling couples omitted from the list. There are no restrictions, the couples can be real or fictional, famous, or just someone who coulda been a contender.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A Gift Horse

When not monitoring the Lake Villa police scanner, your LakeCountyEye spends a muggy summer night reading excerpts from old Daily Herald stories from 2005:
There's one intersection Lake County Board Chairman Suzi Schmidt avoids. It drives her nuts when she gets sidetracked and ends up trapped behind a line of traffic. If anyone should remember to stay away from Grass Lake Road and Route 45, it's Schmidt. She nicknamed it "The Millburn Strangler" a decade ago. The dubious moniker stuck, and became part of local lore. Even today, residents slowly snake though the crossing, especially during rush hours. The speed limit drops and two stop lights stand a quarter-mile apart. Homes and antique shops of the Millburn Historic District sit on either side of the intersection. But thanks to $2 million in federal funds, a new bypass is coming that will ease congestion by taking drivers around the historic district. Local politicians and U.S. Rep. Melissa Bean met near the area Tuesday to chat about ending the congestion. "That intersection has been a problem for as long as I can remember," Schmidt said. "It's horrible." In recent years, traffic has worsened with the addition of two new subdivisions and a new Millburn Elementary District 24 school, she said.
'Millburn Strangler' to be untangled.
Well, that horrible intersection is soon to be a thing of the past. A bypass soon to be built, will send drivers point-blank instead through those two inconvenient subdivisions and elementary school. As readers of this blog are jawdroppingly aware:
Q the Eye/08.14.11
Former County Chair Suzi Schmidt is seeing her wish become reality, as Route 45 is to be re-routed away from the historic antique shops. However, instead of being built through empty farmland, the Route 45 bypass is scheduled to divide suburban Lindenhurst much like Sherman divided Atlanta in 1864.

The news marks the end of a years long struggle between interests situated in Old Mill Creek to the east of Route 45, and Lindenhurst to the west. For operatives wishing to know what needs to be done to be on the winning side of this sort of inter-urban contretemps, your LakeCountyEye is happy to oblige:

To begin, send those campaign donations to your Springfield representatives. Route 45 is a US Highway, and your rep in Springfield is well suited to lobby your rep in Washington:

Reception for Suzi Schmidt with Judy Baar Topinka and Dan Rutherford
Next, pay a visit to city hall. It never hurts to enlist the mayor of your town:

Village of Old Mill Creek
Finally, if your mayor is related to one of Lake County's prominent land owners -- game-set-match!

Tempel Farms
Just follow to the letter these step-by-step recommendations and you and your neighbors will be sleeping with assurance again each night. Your LakeCountyEye guarantees that noisy, smelly, dangerous US highway will find itself, as if by magic, rerouted through someone else's backyard.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Get a Room!

An actual lede from an actual Daily Herald story:
Clapping his hands, Joe Walsh strides into a room at Richard Walker’s Pancake House in Crystal Lake on a sunny Saturday morning. He is wearing worn blue crocs, a red polo shirt tucked into rumpled green cargo shorts, his striped belt missing a loop in back.
Walsh faces tough fight ahead in re-election bid to Congress

You have just enjoyed the inaugural segment of your LakeCountyEye's newest running gag:
Get a Room!
Readers will be apprised of future installments of Get a Room!™ when they are available. In the interim, move along please, there is nothing else to see.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Q the Eye/08.14.11

Dear LakeCountyEye,

The Lake County Department of Transportation wants to reroute a highway through our Subdivision, as well as through our Elementary School and Forest Preserve. The road could've just as easily been routed to the east, through farmland. I'm seeing red and it's not just the traffic lights!

I Need a 45-tuple Bypass

Dear Crash & Millburn,

These are the facts as your LakeCountyEye understands them. The County is given a choice to reroute your highway through either:
  1. Nearby farmland, rendering the property much less valuable to residential developers.
  2. Your subdivision.
And you want to know why they chose (B).

Erm, is this a trick question?

Anyhow, the solution to your problem is easy. Convene a blue-ribbon community advisory group, and interview all the concerned parties, and assess the various environmental, economic and societal impacts, and codify your findings in a report, and present your report to the Lake County Division of Transportation, and expect the LCDOT to do the right thing.

Ha ha j/k. Only someone who just fell off the turnip boat would think that's the way business is conducted in Lake County. Just look at what happened to the tragically inept residents of one Lake County community near the soon-to-be-rerouted Route 45:
Lake County Department of Transportation staff and the engineering consultants appeared to be cavalier and dismissive about the concerns of residents who make up the advisory panel that has been reviewing bypass options for two years. While LCDOT and consultants emphasized traffic flow and preserving a deteriorating historic district, they did not even touch on the impact on residents, their quality of life and their property values.
Diana Kuyper: Red flags raised over bypass option
Instead of being rerouted east through the farmlands of Old Mill Creek, Route 45 is now scheduled to be rerouted to the west through the subdivisions of Lindenhurst. There is no secret howcome -- the answer is as easy as finding out who has been making the bribes donations to the election campaigns of which Springfield legislators.

In Illinois one pays to play. If you think you've backed the wrong horse, then follow the money. Just find out who has been ponying up the dough. 'Nuff said!

If you are an elected official, or a previously elected official, or just a private citizen under indictment, send your political questions to Q the Eye c/o ...

Friday, August 12, 2011

Biting Satire

Sooner or later it was probably inevitable. As readers of this blog are repeatedly aware ...
Kick a Guy When He's Down
in an age when political cartoons are generated by CGI software or Photoshop, it is refreshing to know the Lake County Journal employs a cartoonist who draws his own cartoons. By hand. The unmistakable do-it-yourself style of his cartoons has inspired the moniker:
DIY Cartoonist
Anyhow, the DIY Cartoonist™ at the Lake County Journal has achieved the inevitable, by drawing a DIY cartoon:

A Do-It-Yourself Summer Cartoon
The picture depicts a mosquito feeding on a generic donor. The reader is given the opportunity to choose what the mosquito represents -- and is given some generic disagreeable options.

The mosquito in question -- probably a Culex Pipiens -- looks to be a male. Your LakeCountyEye is no entomologist, but is pretty sure that only female mosquitoes bite. Also the mosquito is shown grinning with bared teeth. Your LakeCountyEye is even more sure that mosquitoes do not have teeth.

Obviously cartoonists enjoy a great deal of license when it comes to lampooning their targets. Your LakeCountyEye has taken some potshots at the DIY Cartoonist™ as well as the Lake County Journal. Is the DIY Cartoonist™ returning fire? One operative has pointed out the drawing of the mosquito bears more than a passing resemblance to your LakeCountyEye. It is hard to say if this was deliberately intended by the DIY Cartoonist™ or merely wishful thinking on the part of the operative. Readers of this blog can decide for themselves if the carnivorous insect looks anything like your LakeCountyEye:

DIY Cartoonist™ Mosquito

Your LakeCountyEye
If you have difficulty seeing this hilarious LakeCountyEye Double Vision™
that may be tears from uncontrollable laughter.
This is cold comfort, but for your LakeCountyEye's money, the mosquito looks more like Ren & Stimpy:

DIY Cartoonist™ Mosquito

Ren & Stimpy
Ditto above, regarding this hilarious LakeCountyEye Double Vision™

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Beer Money

Now that US Treasuries have been downgraded to triple-Z, the LakeCountyEye paper shredder has been working overtime. The junk-status Treasury Bonds have been removed from the LakeCountyEye 401K, in an effort to make room for other investment vehicles, in particular high-yield super-safe municipal bonds. According to Moody's ...
most state, local government and public authorities that issue debt in the municipal bond market are "well insulated from shock," but added that some could be vulnerable to risk during major market volatility.
Some states and cities could face stress: Moody's
And as readers of this blog are richly aware ...
Dollars & Munificence
your LakeCountyEye promised to rate some local municipal bonds, from A to Z. Yesterday your LakeCountyEye evaluated Ingleside's bonds -- while tomorrow, as promised, will be Ivanhoe. All of which means today must be Island Lake.

As readers of this blog are laughably aware, Island Lake -- a community of friendly people™ -- has gotten some bad press lately ...
none of which bodes well when evaluating any municipal offering. Island Lake, after all, is a village with a track record of resolving its inter-governmental differences either by lawsuit or by filing charges. Your LakeCountyEye has to wonder, after settling up with the lawyers, how much will be left in the bank to pay off their bond holders?

There is one silver lining to this otherwise cloudy forecast. Island Lakefest is scheduled this weekend, and this year the village will be operating the beer & wine concession:
the village of Island Lake voted to sell alcohol at the upcoming summer carnival. Historically, the privilege has been the Lion's Club to sell alcohol at village events. Instead, the board voted 4-2 in allowing the village to sell alcohol at the carnival.
Village will sell alcohol at upcoming summer carnival
Your LakeCountyEye knows that in a village as friendly-peopled as Island Lake is, anyone operating the beergarden at their summer carnival is poised to make out like a bandit. Deep-6 those worthless T-Notes because your LakeCountyEye gives Island Lake's bonds a AAA rating.
Operatives are encouraged to attend Island Lakefest 2011 this weekend. Grab a brew, and a ringside seat to the action!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Dollars & Munificence

Your LakeCountyEye has gold fever. Now that gold has cracked the symbolic US$1.gazillion/oz level for the first time, Lake County is selling mining rights to the forest preserves. A combination of disappointing Fort Sheridan green fees, Route 53 Extension toll receipts, and Park City Casino kickbacks forced the County to enact the unusual revenue generating measure. Naturally your LakeCountyEye was first in line for a chance to dig up some of that Forest Preserve gold.

Has your LakeCountyEye ever mentioned that a rented backhoe will guzzle more fuel than a nitro-burning RV? Anyhow, after much time and effort wasted, the closest thing to gold your LakeCountyEye was able to extract from beneath the Forest Preserves was a sack of Olympic Gold Medals. And those can be had at 3 for a dollar on eBay.

Of course your LakeCountyEye has not been prospecting for gold to gain an experience and a story for the grandkids. Lately, the LakeCountyEye 401k has been looking emptier than a gas tank on a rented backhoe. And the goal has been to secure, in times of economic uncertainty, a safe vehicle to grow the LakeCountyEye millions thousands fortune money. That vehicle is just probably not earth-moving equipment.

Luckily while US Treasuries have been downgraded to sub-junk-bond level, that doesn't mean all investment bonds are worthless. There is a simple rule of thumb to follow, your LakeCountyEye has been told, when investing in bonds: The higher the yield, the safer the bond. And judging by the high yields to be gotten from some of the local municipal bonds, there seem to be some pretty good untapped investment opportunities out there sitting under your LakeCountyEye's very nose. For the near future look for your LakeCountyEye online and researching municipal bonds, from A to Z. In particular, Antioch to Zion.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Totally Shop Locally

They say all politics is local. And where Lake County politics is concerned, "local" is defined as somewhere inside Lake County. In theory at least. According to the News-Sun ...
The county of Lake is launching a new "buy local" program to support Lake County businesses, and keep money in the local economy. While Lake County has always encouraged local purchasing, the new initiative is aimed at improving relations with the business community and encourage local vendors to seek business with the county, officials said.
County taking steps to 'buy local'
But as readers of this blog are shockingly aware ...
A Toad in the Road
revelations that the Lake County Dept of Transportation's new traffic wiretapping monitoring system was purchased from a Wisconsin vendor, has sent shock waves ringing somewhere inside Lake County.

The fact that the government of Lake County purchases many of its geegaws from Wisconsin vendors does not surprise your LakeCountyEye. Isn't it a well-known fact that most Lake County businesses have already fled north to the cheese-friendlier state of Wisconsin -- leaving in their wake an economically devastated Lake County to rival the best of any post-apocalyptic dystopia ever imagined?

Ha ha j/k. For your LakeCountyEye's money one could do worse than shop local. Operatives are urged to divert their patronage dollars toward the direction of some local Lake County vendors. With a two-day weekend just around the corner, here are ten fun suggestions for spreading the wealth:

Ten Ways to Grease the Economic Wheels in Lake County

  1. Go for a round of eighteen at the Fort Sheridan golf course.

  2. You can't beat fun at the old ballpark. Catch the Fielders at their new stadium.

  3. Stop for gas and a lube-job at the Route 53 Extension Tollway Oasis (Long Grove facility).

  4. Then head over to the Waukegan Savanna Forest Preserve Shell for a scenic & fully automated car wash.

  5. Dispose that toxic waste at the Buffalo Grove Land and Lakes landfill.

  6. Sample Waukegan's finest cuisine at the Lake County Courthouse cafeteria.

  7. Take a romantic horse-and-buggy ride at the Lakewood Forest Preserve Olympic Equestrian Village.

  8. Pick up some quick cash at a North Chicago payday loan outlet.

  9. And spend it at the Park City Casino.

  10. Finally, pick up your I ♥ My Deadbeat Dad campaign bumpersticker at the nearest Re-Elect Joe Walsh office.

Look for your LakeCountyEye this weekend at -- where else? -- the Dells.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

A Toad in the Road

If you've observed a low-speed-vehicle driving erratically up & down the county roads, that would be your LakeCountyEye texting-in this blog post. Operatives wondering why your LakeCountyEye is texting-while-driving may want to consult this Daily Herald story:
A real-time travel information system that pings signals off motorists' cellphones and other wireless devices to gauge traffic flow could be tested in Lake County. The BlueTOAD system, which stands for Bluetooth Travel-time Origination And Destination, selects Bluetooth devices in passing cars and calculates travel times and road speeds by re-detecting the same devices as they move. The Lake County Board is considering testing the system on Washington Street between Route 83 and Sheridan Road.
Lake County could use phones, music players to monitor traffic
A system as ridiculously complex as described no doubt needs beta testers, which is why your LakeCountyEye is currently careening down Washington St, pinging signals off other motorists' cellphones.

In between pings, your LakeCountyEye has been texting field-notes. All ten should be forwarded, posthaste, to the Lake County Board:

Ten Questions to Ask the Lake County Division of Transportation
  1. How accurate is BlueTOAD when no one is on their cell-phone?

  2. How accurate is BlueTOAD when everyone is on their cell-phone and traffic is gridlocked from all the accidents?

  3. Do BlueTOAD signals jam the red light cameras?

  4. Is BlueTOAD equipped to handle a plague of blue toads?

  5. If BlueTOAD eliminates traffic congestion, does that mean the Route 53 extension is being mothballed?

  6. When BlueTOAD says "Turn Right in 100 Meters" -- how far is a meter?

  7. What's wrong with this picture?
    Exhibit A
    "Local businesses are the backbone of our economy," County Board Chairman David Stolman said in the release. "By buying local, we can keep money circulating in our community. This boosts the local economy, and can help businesses grow, which can lead to more jobs."
    Lake County taking steps to 'Buy Local'

    Exhibit B
    The BlueTOAD system, manufactured by Madison, Wis.-based TrafficCast can distinguish wireless-enabled cellular phones, music players and similar devices from each other
    Lake County could use phones, music players to monitor traffic
  8. Can BlueTOAD locate the nearest Triple Baconator Value Meal?

  9. Can BlueTOAD replenish an I-PASS transponder?

  10. Will BlueTOAD be available to sharecrop 160 acres of Farm Town?

Look for your LakeCountyEye in traffic court. It's looking like BlueTOAD signals do not jam the radar guns.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Q the Eye/08.02.11

Dear LakeCountyEye,

August is here. Illinois families once again are preparing for the upcoming school year. School supplies must be purchased, along with apparel for students, many of whom have grown taller since spring. Any chance of a repeat of the statewide sales tax holiday?

Atlas Krugged

Dear Noisiest Herald,

Funny you ask. The same question was posed yesterday -- exactly word-for-word -- in a Northwest-Herald editorial:
Any chance of a repeat of the statewide sales tax holiday? Not this year. The governor has said nary a peep about it, because the Illinois General Assembly didn't reauthorize the tax holiday. Frankly, we don't recall the governor pushing very hard for a reauthorization, either. What's different in 2011?
Why no tax holiday?
For your LakeCountyEye's money, every day ought to be a tax holiday. What is government good for anyways, besides to hand out free stuff? Illinois could have rolling tax holidays. On Mondays there would be no tax on school supplies. Tuesdays could be a tax holiday at restaurants. Wednesdays, no taxes on cigarettes and beer. Thursdays would be for LCD Flat Screen TVs. The mind boggles.

But to answer the question -- Why no tax holiday? -- look no farther than this Northwest-Herald editorial:
As if the news weren't bad enough for Illinois ... Along comes a report that concludes the Land of Lincoln is more broke than any of the 49 other U.S. states. A statewide audit released last week shows that Illinois owes $37.9 billion more than it has in total assets, including taxpayer money, investments and property.
Illinois' fiscal news worsens
Why no tax holiday? Erm, perhaps because a statewide audit released last week shows that Illinois owes $37.9 billion more than it has in total assets?

Anyhow, if you'd like to see the details, the editorials are easy to find. Last Sunday, July 31, the Northwest-Herald wants everyone to throw the bums out because Illinois is broke ...
Illinois' fiscal news worsens
Three days later, August 2, the Northwest-Herald observes there will be no Illinois tax holiday this year ...
Why no tax holiday?
... so they want everyone to throw the bums out:
Operatives are reminded that the Northwest-Herald's circulation area is predominantly McHenry County.

If you are an elected official, or a previously elected official, or just a private citizen under indictment, send your political questions to Q the Eye c/o ...